Tiny Sprouts Perform in Kindergarten
by Lisa Gemperline
“Thank you for coming,” the earnest bright eyes looked toward me as I was packing up my camera gear. “Thank you for dancing with us,” said another pair of excited brown eyes as they coyly looked away. “I am so happy you came,'' was spoken softly as the young kindergartener from Ms. Cherry's class ran tiptoeing back to the group of little seedling sprouts. My daughter, my grandson, Ms. Cherry, her assistant and myself – we had just witnessed the magic of arts integration and had seen for ourselves little lightbulbs going off like a swarm of fireflies.
Peeking into the classroom through the little glass window to see if we were in the right class, we saw an explosion of color in the classroom. As we quietly entered, a few eyes looked our way curiously and cautiously, wondering why we were there.
Photosynthesis was the word of the day.
As we settled in and the tiny seedlings realized that we were not threatening, the music started, the colored scarfs were passed out and the anticipation built for the upcoming performance. Crouching on the floor with a colored scarf draped over their tiny frames, they freeze, they sigh--and the performance begins.
“Close your eyes and think about what just happened? How did it feel to be moving through the life cycle of a flower? How did it feel to be a tiny seed, as you grew a stem, when you sprouted leaves, when you danced in the wind? Raise a pinky if you’d like to answer.”
Raising a pinky, a little girl said, “I felt good and amazing. My legs were making roots.”
“What did you feel while stretching with arms and knees making roots into the ground?”
Eyes were still.
Remembering the Magic.
“What were you thinking about while you were performing?”
“I was thinking about my flowers.”
“I was pink, and I had leaves.”
“I have two flowers outside in my garden. They bloom when it’s cold but not in the summertime.”
“When I go outside, they are blooming pink.”
“My name is a flower.“
“Let’s be round and pop our blossoms out at the top! Five-four-three-two-one”
"I was a yellow flower growing arms in the sunshine”"
“I felt happy and scared all at the same time.
"I get to use photosynthesis."
As we left the performance of the flowers, we were in awe at what we had just witnessed.
Above our heads we could see the colorful collaboration of butterflies on the ceiling. The spreader of good news. The Pollinators.
In our heads we were doing a happy dance. The dance of the flowers.
We were fully awake. A kind of waking up. Like a seed reaching for the sun.
There is a new way, a new path, a new journey that we all can take to integrate our childhood imagination with the magic of science and the wonder of creation.
Watching my grandson Ollie as he was dancing down the hall inspired by butterflies, colored scarves and sunshine, I knew that the cycle would continue.
Lisa Gemperline is a photographer and arts enthusiast in Farmington, Utah. Mother of five and Grammy Lou to two grandchildren, Lisa seeks opportunities to see things others can’t see, with the aid of her lens and camera. “When I’m behind a camera, my mind shifts from worry and fear to excitement, hope, and wonder. It’s like magic.”